I love sleep. If I could, I’d sleep all day. Staying up late and pulling all nighters for homework or Netflix may have even taken a few years off my life if we’re being honest. But the thing is, college doesn’t seem to like early mornings and sleep.

The combination of pulling all nighters, going out, and waking up for class creates a mixture of sleep deprivation and gallons of coffee that isn’t the healthiest. Many people tend to avoid picking earlier classes because quite frankly, unless you’re a morning person, waking up early sucks. But when everyone’s trying to pick those later classes, you’re more than likely to have at least one early morning class in your college career.

So whether you adore waking up at day break or you’re forced by your schedule to drag your carcass out of bed earlier than you would’ve liked, here’s five reasons why having an 8:30 AM early class might not actually be that bad.

1. You Have Time for Breakfast!

savoury, Waffles, sausages, Breakfast, Eggs
Akhila Anand

By waking up for your early class you have the opportunity to skip the long dining hall lines or make and eat breakfast before or after class. If you wake up at noon, you’re basically waking up into lunch time and we all know breakfast is the best meal of the day, right? You don't want to miss out on that. Plus, having time for breakfast is beneficial for your health as it helps to boost your metabolism in the morning.

2. More Hours in Your Day

We all have 24 hours in our day but it’s up to us to decide how to use them. When you wake up early and get class out of the way, you have the rest of the day for yourself. By waking up later, you have to stay up later to make up for the hours you lost sleeping.

As the night goes on, your brain gets more tired. According to a UCLA study, this sleep deprivation over time affects how your brain cells communicate to each other which can affect your memory and visual perception. When you wake up early, you have more daylight hours to use to your advantage. Get that sunshine and photosynthesize your way to success.

3. You Can Go to the Gym or Get a Spot at the Library

Because of the plethora of students at UF, it’s sometimes challenging during peak hours to find a good study spot in the libraries on campus. If you wake up early, you can secure a spot instead of doing the awkward walk-around search for an empty chair. Plus, you’ll be able to find spots together if you want to study with friends.

The same goes with the gym. Whether you’re chilling in Student Rec or eager to make the trip to Southwest Rec to get your sweat on, the gym is packed during peak hours. When you wake up early for class, you have time to go to the gym because that’s one more class out of the way for the day. Get your study on. Get your sweat on. 

4. Sunlight >>>> Blue Light

A recent Harvard study found that blue light suppresses the hormone melatonin more powerfully than any other type of light. Melatonin influences your circadian rhythm which is normally kept on track by sunlight. This rhythm is what keeps your body on a healthy schedule.

Staying up later to make up for the hours in your day you spent sleeping in may require you to use technology that emits blue light which can have harmful affects on your body(making it harder to fall asleep). Poor sleep quality or a lack of sleep can even result in an increased risk of depression, diabetes, or cardiovascular problems.

5. Eliminate Unnecessary Late Night Snacking

If your classes don't start until later on in the day, you might be tempted to stay up later the night before. And as we all know, one episode on Netflix can lead to hours going by without notice - which can lead to staying up later than you previously intended (I'm guilty!).

A University of California Davis article explains that when we stay up later and become more sleep deprived, the pleasure centers of our brains are activated and directly affect the choices we make, especially the food ones. This can result in choosing unhealthy, high-carbohydrate, high-fat foods to snack on while we finish a season of our favorite show.

Embrace the 8:30 AM

So as registration for spring semester classes approaches, think twice about avoiding those 8:30 AM classes because they really aren't all that bad. Waking up early for class or just getting your day started early can help you get your life on track and create a daily schedule that helps you get sh*t done like the badass you are. And if all that isn’t convincing enough for you to not hate waking up early, just think to yourself “at least I don’t have a 7:20 AM class instead.”